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The Vaping Revolution Has Only Just Begun

19th February 2015

In spite of current hurdles (which are mainly hysterical and misleading media reactions to science), vaping is the future. Vaping will evolve, and it will re-adjust to its original path as a safe nicotine/chemical delivery technology based on low atomiser temperatures.

When this happens the what-ifs and worst case scenarios that have created doubts about some e-cigarette technologies will disappear.

Then it will become apparent that the technology can do so much more than just deliver nicotine.

An example of this is the combination of cannabidiols with nicotine in the e-liquid. Cannabidiols are amongst the most researched and promising plant compounds for the treatment of a multitude of illnesses and health conditions, particularly relating to immune system over-activity and inflammatory pathways, that are strongly linked to age-related disease, the actual rate of tissue aging, and neuro-psychological conditions including anxiety and depression.

Nicotine also has anti-inflammatory effects, and whilst this is unsafe on growing adolescent brains, it is protective for older ones - this is also why we and many other venders in the vaping community welcome restrictions on e-cig sales to minors.

When we combine nicotine with certain cannabinoids, such as cannabidiol (CBD) we may have a great opportunity to help treat certain medical problems. These include;

  • Social anxiety disorder (without losing alertness or energy)
  • Lung Cancer in ongoing smokers
  • Psychosis and mental illness
  • Alzheimers

Cannabidiol is showing great promise at this research stage of being able to assist treatment of lung cancer. It is able to act as a chemotherapy that may be combined with other drugs to treat lung and respiratory tract cancers when delivered as a vapor. The benefit would particularly be expected when the patient continues to smoke during treatment or after treatment or over long periods when the risk of lung cancer is high, and the vastly less carcinogenic e-cigarette is used instead of ongoing smoking. As such, if there is no other way to get high-risk smokers to quit, then conversion to an e-cig with added cannabidiol can be considered a potentially fabulous cancer treatment/prevention strategy. Obviously much more research is needed, but there is promise here.

Cannabidiol also has shown anti-psychotic effects, which means that in the mental health treatment setting, it could assist in the treatment of patients. I have experience as a carer in this setting and it is a fact that many patients heavily smoke. Many researchers have concluded that the nicotine is being ingested as a form of self-medication. In itself, the data shows that nicotine may have an anti-psychotic effect, and an anti-depressant effect, and that it is the toxins in cigarettes which have opposite effects which increase depression. Patients in Mental Health Units often spend a good fraction of their income allowance on buying cigarettes and the constant monitoring and handing out of cigarettes by staff is also a drain on resources that can be better spent in other ways. If the toxins in the cigarettes  counteract the hypothesised benefits of nicotine, then why not switch to e-cigarettes and this will also save staff time and patients money, whilst potentially improving mood and motivation. Cannabidiol appears to have the potential to have these effects and assist in treatment options, particularly as it combats psychoses and anxiety without causing sedation or loss of cognitive functions.

So here I have just described two opportunities to actually make e-cigarettes into health promoting technologies, combining low burn temperatures (non-toxic vapor) along with the benefits of two compounds that can be part of the e-liquid.

These applications of cannabidiol with or without nicotine used in e-cigarette vaporisers or other delivery methods, have been disclosed to prevent unwarranted patent restrictions that could harm their adoption and affordability to those that may benefit from them.